Payroll Updates for Employers: September 2018

Below are four key payroll updates for employers to be aware of and action where relevant:

    Update 1: New entitlement to unpaid Domestic and Family Violence Leave in Industry and Occupation Awards
    Following their latest review of all Modern Awards Fair Work has introduced a entitlement to 5 days unpaid Family and Domestic Violence Leave for all employees covered by Industry and Occupation Awards. This is something all employers and their payroll personnel should be aware of.

    The entitlement is effective to your first full payrun after 1 August 2018.

    For a summary of the key points about this new entitlement, please review our blog 7 Key Points on the new Family and Domestic Violence Leave Entitlements in Modern Awards.

    Update 2: HELP debt repayment rates
    On 1 July 2019 two new measures to help speed up repayment of Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) debts will become effective:

      1: The income level at which HELP debt repayments become mandatory will drop from $51,957.00 to $45,000.00 per annum.
      2: Repayment rates will be adjusted so that persons with incomes at or above $131,989.00 are required to contribute 10% of their income per annum towards their HELP debt.

    Employers who have employees with HELP debts will need to ensure their payroll systems have been updated with the new rates when these changes come into effect, to ensure that extra tax is withheld at the adjusted rates.

    Update 3: Long Service Leave Act 2018 (Vic)
    It seems that it will still be 1 November 2018 before this Act comes into effect. It was passed on 8 May 2018 and is to replace the Long Service Leave Act 1992 (Vic) from 1 November 2018, unless effected prior to that date. However there are no signs of the Act being effected earlier. The Act contains changes for employers in Victoria on how Long Service Leave (LSL) is accrued and when and how it may be taken.

    For full details on these changes and what steps employers should be taking to prepare for the Act, see our previous blog Amendments passed on Long Service Leave legislation in Victoria with imminent effect.

    Update 4: Super Guarantee Amnesty
    The Treasury Laws Amendment (2018 Superannuation Measures No. 1) Bill 2018 which contains the proposed Super Guarantee Amnesty still remains waiting it’s second reading in the Senate. There has been a lot of controversy around the proposal and the Australian Labor Party has previously indicated they will vote against it.

    For the Amnesty to become law it needs to be passed by a majority vote in the Senate in it’s current form (it has already been passed in the House of Representatives) and then it must receive Royal Assent from the Governer-General. If the Senate needed to make changes in order to be passed with a majority vote, then the amended Bill would be required to regain the approval of the House of Representatives.

    While we would hope the Amnesty does become legislated, just some clarity on what is happening would be much appreciated by business groups and employers nationally.

    For details on what the Super Guarantee Amnesty would mean for employers, see our blog Top 7 Questions on the Super Guarantee Amnesty.

If you have any questions about how these payroll updates may affect your business please call us on 03 5339 3200 or contact us here.

Thanks for reading.

By Genna Kidd

The information contained on this website has been provided as general advice only.  The contents have been prepared without taking account of your personal objectives, financial situation or needs.  You should, before you make any decision regarding any information, strategies or products mentioned on this website, consult your own financial advisor to consider whether that is appropriate having regard to your own objectives, financial situation and needs.

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